Wildcats retool roster with youth | Girls basketball

Dec 07, 2018

Archbishop Murphy’s roster has not undergone a complete overhaul.

But the graduation of six seniors, who helped lead the Wildcats to a second-place finish at the 2A state girls basketball tournament, definitely has led to some major changes.

Archbishop Murphy added five freshmen alongside the three returning seniors – Emily Rodabaugh, Julia Lucas and Audrey Graham.

The new-look Wildcats split their first two games, losing to 1A state defending champion Lynden Christian 51-31 and then defeating North Kitsap 53-18 in their home opener in nonconference action last week.

Archbishop Murphy coach Cassie Snyder said the common thread in the first two games was solid defense.

“Both games I’ve been really impressed with our defensive intensity,” she said. “We’ve done a fantastic job there.”

Nerves likely played a role in the season-opening loss to the Lyncs. The freshmen appeared to settle down in the home opener.

“The second game was a great experience being at home,” Snyder said. “They were a little more comfortable. It was nice to get all the young kids play ing time in last Friday’s game.”

Snyder plans to lean heavily on the three seniors to help guide the younger players this season.

“Losing six seniors, scoring is going to be a big thing for all three of them,” Snyder said. “We have a lot of young kids who can score. Getting them the confidence and experience is a big thing so that they can feel comfortable in the games to come.”

Rodabaugh earned co-MVP honors last year in the Cascade Conference.

“She’s huge for this program, not only as a great basketball player, but just a great leader,” Snyder said.

Kiana Yesik and Taylor Campbell are two freshmen, who have started out strong. Yesik has impressed Snyder with her shooting, while Campbell’s defensive skills have enabled the freshman to have success in guarding some of the opponents’ top players.

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